CNA offering prospector training course online

New delivery method will make training more accessible

11/1/2023 10:43:38 AM

In an effort to increase the number of prospectors working in Newfoundland and Labrador, College of the North Atlantic (CNA) has revised the Introduction to Prospecting course and its method of delivery.

To address issues of accessibility and flexibility, and to ultimately attract more potential prospectors, the college has moved the course to a continuous intake model and has placed the theory portion online. Students can complete 30 hours of self-directed study (with instructional support) and then complete the 14 hour in-person prospecting practical component at one of four different locations throughout the province (eastern, central, western and Labrador).

“The revised Introduction to Prospecting course, in addition to being updated, will be delivered in a manner that removes accessibility challenges, such as time and location, while preserving an abbreviated, but essential practical component,” says Brent Howell, Dean of Natural Resources and Industrial Trades at CNA. “This new format will no doubt be more attractive to individuals who have an interest in becoming prospectors, but previously were unable to access training due to the traditional delivery model.”

During their 30 hours of online training, students will learn about various minerals and mineral deposits, prospecting tools and techniques, geophysical operations, legislative frameworks, research, resources and supports, and the business side of prospecting. The practical component will see students spend time in the field practicing what they’ve learned with a qualified instructor. Upon completion, students will attain the Genuine Prospector designation.

Norm Mercer, President of the Newfoundland and Labrador Prospectors Association, says the association is pleased to see these changes and says prospectors are vital to the province’s mining industry.

“A healthy and vibrant prospecting sector is one of the key cornerstones to a successful and growing provincial mineral industry,” he says. “Many of our past and present operating mines were either directly or indirectly discovered by prospectors.

“It’s been nearly six years since formal prospector training programs have been offered through CNA. The need is great for new residents to take up prospecting as the province has great geology and world class mineral potential.”

Andrew Parsons, the province’s Minister of Industry, Energy and Technology, echos that sentiment, saying prospectors are critical to the mining industry in Newfoundland and Labrador and this new course delivery format will result in more prospectors entering the field.

“Prospecting is the early industry step in the development of Newfoundland and Labrador’s mineral potential,” says Minister Parsons. “This development creates jobs, economic benefits and contributes toward sustainable communities. Prospector training is an important industry resource to maintain and increase the capacity of Newfoundland and Labrador’s prospecting community. This will create a pathway for interested people to become involved and develop the skills required to be successful in the industry. Newfoundland and Labrador’s mineral potential spans our province.  The delivery of this course will make training more available and support prospecting and potential development of our mineral resources throughout all regions of the province.”

Tuition for the course is normally $1,475, however this pilot offering will cost students $737.50 due to a 50 per cent subsidy, provided with the support of ACOA and the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Registration for the new Introduction to Prospecting course is now open. To register, or for more information, contact Gail Dober at 709-643-7749 or via email at, or Jonathan Bennett at 709-643-2095 or via email at


Media Contact:

Stephen Lee
Communications Manager
College of the North Atlantic
Ph. 709-643-7721